The Pentagon claims that China is expanding its nuclear arsenal faster than what is expected.
“The accelerating pace of the PRC’s nuclear expansion may enable the PRC to have up to 700 deliverable nuclear warheads by 2027,” the US Defense Department said in a report released Wednesday.
“The PRC likely intends to have at least 1,000 warheads by 2030, exceeding the pace and size the DoD projected in 2020,” It added.
The US State Department recently announced the number of US nuclear weapons, both active and inactive, stands at 3,750 as of September 2020, which is almost five times more than that of China.
There was no official response from Beijing to the latest Pentagon report.
The US and Russia are the world’s largest holders and developers of nuclear weapons, followed by Britain, France, China, India, Pakistan, North Korea and the Israeli regime, which has not declared its possession of nuclear warheads, but does not deny having them. The regime does not allow any international inspection of its nuclear facilities either.
The United States has produced more than 70,000 nuclear warheads since 1945, more than all other nuclear-weapon states combined. The US government spent at least US$9.61 trillion in present-day terms on nuclear weapons, according to experts.
The United States was the first country to manufacture nuclear weapons and is the only country to have used them -- on Hiroshima and Nagasaki in World War II. The two bombings killed up to 226,000 people, most of whom were civilians.